Seemingly insignificant moments of awareness in our everyday life; doorways into God’s presence

Empowered Prayer  8-22-2021

Thirsty hearts- pray for hearts that thirst for God


Now on the last day, the great day of the feast Jesus stood and cried out, saying, “let him come to me and drink. He who believes in me, as the scriptures say, from his innermost being will flow reivers of living waters. John 7:37-38


I took a walk along the LosGatos creek and was saddened at the sight of geese seeking water on dry ground and sipping muddy water out of a plastic tub that had been left under the bridge. This sight reminded me of so many pictures of children drinking muddy water in 3rd world countries unaware that there is such a thing as pure water. There is  a deeper thirst than water for the body and that is the longing of a thirsty soul. This is the water that Jesus spoke about to the woman at the well in Samaria promising that those who drink of this water will never thirst again and it is that same spiritual water that we have today as Christians to give to people around us everyday. Pray for people seeking God – pray for those that thirst.


Merciful Father, as the  summer sun bakes the soil around us open our eyes, make us aware of the earth’s need for water and let the cracked soil be a reminder of the thirst in the human soul for You. Bring into this world a spiritual thirst causing many to turn toward you seeking the water that truly satisfies, like the water Jesus gave to the woman at the well. By your grace, give us open hearts and wisdom to minister to the multitudes that seek you. Amen (hmmm, perhaps we should open up a lemonade stand on the  corner?)


Prayer walk – Walk through your  neighborhood looking for signs of the current drought and ask God for awareness of spiritual drought in people’s hearts.


Daily scriptures about water for prayer and meditation


“Each will be like a refuge from the wind and a shelter from the storm like streams of water in a dry country, like the shade of a huge rock in a parched land.” Isaiah 32:2


“He who believes in Me, as the scripture said, ‘From his innermost being will flow rivers of living water’”John 7:38


“I spread out my hands to you; my soul thirsts for you like a parched land” Psalm 143:6  NLT


“As the deer longs for flowing streams, so I long for you, God.” Psalm 42:1


“Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.” Matthew 5:6


The story of Jesus and the woman at the well is found in John 4:1-42


Ann Fitzgerald

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Glory to God     8-07-21


Our purpose is to bring glory to God’s name. Our work is to see the beauty of this world and find purpose in the broken pieces of His Kingdom. Our work is to gather pearls and string them on golden thread ... and we are the pearls, God’s children, scattered throughout the earth. Our work is to see God’s presence in our midst and run to tell others what we find.


Let us then be careful of seeing the work we do as our purpose in this life, collecting our accomplishments like pearls on a string. Rather, let us bring glory to God’s name in this place so that all people will hear the good news of God’s love and know of their value in His eyes.


Ephesians 1:11-14 NRSV... I n Christ we have also obtained an inheritance,

having been destined according to the purpose of him who accomplishes all things according to his counsel and will, 12 so that we, who were the first to set our hope on Christ, might live for the praise of his glory. 13 In him you also, when you had heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and had believed in him, were marked with the seal of the promised Holy Spirit; 14 this is the pledge of our inheritance toward redemption as God’s own people, to the praise of his glory.


Matthew 13:45-46 NKJV... Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant seeking

beautiful pearls, 46 who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he had and bought it.”


Pray that we are able to accept God’s love and know of our value. Pray that through God’s grace we will glorify Him in this place and that our lives would be a testimony to his grace and mercy.


Ann Fitzgerald


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Small Graces 7-28-2021


Holy Spirit, open our eyes to the small graces in our lives everyday, our ears to hear the whispers of your

presence in our lives. Remind us to pause, to quiet our minds and to listen to your words so that we will

be renewed in the integrity of our mission to serve you alone and to proclaim the good news to all

creation

     Take my hand and lead me, LORD.

          Hold my face in your hands,

               strong hands, scarred hands

     Hold my face and turn my gaze into your light,

          Out of the darkness and into the light of your grace.

     Show me, help me, give me grace to live in your presence

          Small graces to live in the glory of your presence. AMEN


Thank you, Great and Glorious Lord, for this opportunity to come into your presence and to know peace

that passes all human understanding in the midst of this pandemic, in the midst of uncertainty of the

future, in the midst of violence and chaos in this country. Thank you for transforming us as a church body

to be a witness of your love and mercy into the world to share the good news, teaching the things you

have taught us and baptizing them in the name of the father son and holy spirit.

          PRAYER CARD – taking the gospel around the world through our prayers.

Pray that we, as your church, would be awake to the physical and spiritual needs of our community and

the community around the world. Pray that we would hear God’s call to feed the hungry, to minister to

the sick, to preach the Gospel and to make disciples of all nations.


Pray that our lives would glorify God in our thoughts, words, and deeds and that GDLC would be a light

in this community.


Ann Fitzgerald



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Olympics, Olympics, Olympics Empowered Prayer 7-25-2021


This is a time of gathering for people around the world to watch the fastest and the strongest compete for the honor of their country. I don’t know about you but our house is filled with excitement and anticipation as schedules are re-arranged to get the most viewing hours possible. Would you like to travel around the world and learn more about the countries, the athletes and the history of the Olympics while praying as we go? I discovered a website, a virtual storehouse of info and prayer direction specifically designed around the Olympic games. I hope that you will take time to explore this website and get involved in a prayer journey with Christians around the world. Be part of this global prayer journey, today, day 2, is Australia.


https://athletesinaction.org/summer2021/prayer

.

Following is the mission statement taken from Athletes in Action (ministry of Crusades for Christ)


“Brokenness exists in every area of life, including sport. But we believe there is a remedy to the brokenness of the world in the gospel of Jesus. Athletes experience brokenness both personally and as part of sport-culture. They also have unmatched influence in their communities and around the globe. Since 1966, we have been helping athletes experience the hope and purpose that comes from following Jesus, and equipping them to use their platform to be part of God’s mission in the world to make disciples of all nations. By serving, training, and sending athletes as influencers into the world, we are building spiritual movements everywhere through the platform of sport so that everyone knows someone who truly follows Jesus .”


https://athletesinaction.org/about/mission-vision-values/


I found this link on https://prayercast.com/ in ‘PraytheNews’


Be informed in your prayers. Learn about the people of each country and know what is happening each day.


Ann Fitzgerald

Empowered prayer July 18, 2021


A morning scripture prayer...


Creator God, open my eyes to see the beauty you created; lest I focus on the darkness of my sin.

(open my eyes that I may turn from darkness to light. Acts 26:18 NIV)


Merciful God, whisper in my ear the truth of your mercy; lest I bow my head in shame.

(no one who trusts in God will ever be disgraced, Psalm 25:3 NLT)


Breath of God, fill my mouth with sweet words to say; lest I curse the people you long to bless.

(may the words of my mouth be pleasing in your sight. see Psalm 19:14 NIV )


So that when I seek you first then I will find you,

(you will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. Jeremiah 29:13)


And when I acknowledge you, I will know the direction to walk.

(in all your ways acknowledge God, he will make straight your paths. Proverbs 3:5-6)


Help me to walk with you in every hour so others will know of your love.

(so that your ways may be known on earth. See Psalm 67)


Ann Fitzgerald
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Go into all the world... through prayer Empowered Prayer 7-11-2021 resource


Jesus prayed often throughout his time on earth and taught his disciples to do the same. The New Testament often records the constant and fervent prayers of Jesus and we are to follow his example.


And... Jesus charged us to go throughout the world telling people the good news of God’s grace and mercy We can reach people around the world through our prayers.


I found a great website that takes us around the world to learn about other nations, other religions and cultures teaching us how to pray for people around the world. This site has many features including testimonies, podcasts, current news of each country and other helps to empower us to be faithful in prayer. I am trying to spend 20 minutes daily on this website to widen my scope of God’s work around the world. Try it out, listen to 1 testimony a day or refer to a particular field of interest to learn how to pray for God’s people around the world.


“PRAYERCAST, a ministry of OneWay, leverages innovative technologies, and the help of gifted intercessors are then used to create unique, compelling, and professional quality prayer resources that are distributed around the world using current and emerging technologies. Prayercast resources are used regularly by God’s people around the world in personal devotions, prayer meetings, church services, conferences, and large international prayer gatherings”.


https://prayercast.com/index.html


Ann Fitzgerald


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Empowered Prayed 6-27-21 Breathe


In the beginning – God breathed – and .... life began.


Prayer begins with breath. Slow down, breathe, embrace the calm, hear the whisper of your soul toward God and listen to God calling to you. Be present with yourself as God is present with you. Breathe


Breathe in slowly through your nose until your lungs are full, pause and exhale fully by blowing through your lips. Do this 3 times. Breathe in the Spirit of God in this wonderful place where prayer is alive and communion is sweet. Breathe. We might not feel God’s presence or understand how prayer works but when we turn our hearts to God He listens. Breathe.


Be still and know – let your breath still the craziness of your mind. Here are a few scriptures for meditation as we quiet ourselves in the presence of God. Breathe.


Psalm 46:10, Amplified Bible

“Be still and know (recognize, understand) that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations! I will be exalted in the earth.”


Mark 4:39, Niv

He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Quiet! Be still!” Then the wind died down and it was completely calm.


Philippians 4:7 NIV

And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.


Breath Of God .

( Butler, Terry / Rethmeier, Cindy)



Flood over me

Like a river, my God.

Immerse me

In Your living stream.

Awaken the song

That You placed

In my heart.

Spirit, breathe on me,

Spirit, breathe on me.


© 1998 Mercy / Vineyard Publishing (Admin. by Music Services) CCLI License No. 587498

Ann Fitzgerald

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Empowered Prayer 6-20-21    Prayers of Lament into Hope


Last week I wrote about the prayer of lament


Every Christian goes through times of spiritual dryness

when God seems distant and we wonder if our prayers are being heard. God is a merciful God, a loving

Father who hears our every word and longs to heal wounds that bind us. This week I will continue out of

lament into hope, a hope that never fails us. (See Romans 5:3-5) In times of lament we remember God

and his attributes as worldly things fail to bring security. Pain, grief and injustice may remain but in hope

we are renewed, strengthened to continue in the paths God has prepared for us.


Psalm 63 is an example of a prayer of lament into hope. David wandered in the desert of Judah as he

penned this psalm.


  • Lament - Psalm 63 begins (vss. 1, 6b):You, God, are my God, earnestly I seek you; I thirst for you,my whole being longs for you, in a dry and parched land where there is no water. I think of you through the watches of the night
  • Hope - David’s cries turn to hope in vs 6a, 7-8.On my bed I remember you. Because you are myhelp, I sing in the shadow of your wings. I cling to you, your right hand upholds me.

Psalm 5:1-3

  • Lament – vs.1-2: Listen to my words, Lord, consider my lament. Hear my cry for help my King and my God, for to you I pray.
  • Hope – vs. 3:In the morning, LORD, you hear my voice; in the morning I lay my requests before you and wait expectantly

.

Merciful Father, thank you for hearing our prayers even in times that we feel so far

from you. Remind us to come, give us courage to open our hearts to you as you

transform us into your likeness. We wait for you knowing that you are there.


Ann Fitzgerald

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Empowered prayer June 13 , 2021 Prayer of Lament


Every Christian knows times of spiritual dryness when our prayers seem to bounce off the ceiling. It does

not matter the age, the number of years spent in study or the devotion to spiritual disciplines all

Christians experience times when God seems far away. It is in these times of silence that we learn to

pray.


Crying to God in lament is not the same as turning against God or wallowing in self pity but rather a

grievance rising from a sense of abandonment, as one forsaken by a loving parent. Of course, God will

never leave us or forsake us but will allow us to experience his perceived absence for the purpose of

purifying our heart and drawing us ever closer to himself. The prayer of lament is the honest words of a

humble heart dependent on God for mercy and comfort in this life.


Prayers of lament are recorded throughout history. The most familiar prayer of lament was spoken by

Jesus as he was crucified “My God, my God why hast though forsaken me?”


Write your own prayer of lament. Choose a prayer of lament from scripture or by a well-known follower

of Christ that resonates for you. Use it as a pattern to write a prayer, a poem, or letter to God from your

own heart in honesty and humility. Notice in these prayers that God never leaves us in the wilderness

but brings us into the light of day. Space prohibits writing out prayers I would like to share. I will write

out 1 verse from Psalm 42 and give you a list to explore.


Psalm 42 in its entirety is a psalm of lament including the psalmist’s confidence in God


Psalm 42:7 I hear the tumult of the raging seas as your waves and surging tides sweep over me. But

each day the LORD pours his unfailing love upon me, and through each night I sing his songs, praying to

God who gives me life.


Further prayers of lament from the Psalms, ps. 88:13-14, Ps 109:1, Ps. 13:1, and from the New Testament

see: 1 Cor 1:9, 2 Timothy 2:19, Romans 8:16


Ann Fitzgerald


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Empowered Prayer  June 6, 2021    The prayer of blessing


“God bless you” is a familiar phrase to each of us but said with little recognition of its meaning. Pastor Pat has fond memories of his mother’s ‘God bless you’ as he left the house unaware that her words were a small prayer for God’s presence in his life. According to the Strong’s concordance the word bless comes from the Greek ‘makarios’ meaning to make something large or lengthy. When God blesses us he "extends" his benefits and enlarges his mercy to us. The prayer of blessing lets us be spiritually present to others in prayer asking God that his grace and favor be extended to another person.


The prayer of blessing is an exercise written by —Rev. Sidwell Mokgothu, Limpopo Synod Bishop of the Methodist Church of Southern Africa and board member for Africa Upper Room Ministries.


Try it out. Begin by finding a comfortable and quiet place to pray this prayer of blessing. Take several slow, deep breaths while letting go any tension in your neck and shoulders. Let yourself rest there and savor the quiet. Pray this blessing replacing the pronoun, ‘you’, with the name of a friend, of an acquaintance, an enemy, and yourself. 


  “The LORD bless you and keep you; the LORD make his face to shine on you and be gracious to you; the LORD turn his face toward you and give you peace. (numbers 6:24) 1.     Pray for yourself as you let go of today’s tasks (Take a moment for several slow, deep breaths.)

  1.   Pray for a good friend thanking God for the gift of a friend.  “The LORD bless my friend________ and keep her; the LORD make his face to shine on her  and be gracious to her; the LORD turn his face toward ______ and give ______ your peace.”     (Take several deep breaths.)
  2. Pray for an acquaintance, someone you cross paths with on occasion but don’t know well.   “The LORD bless you and keep you; the LORD make his face to shine on you and be gracious to you; the LORD turn his face toward you and give you peace.”    (Take several deep breaths.)
  3.  Pray for someone you dislike—an enemy. Imagine them in God’s loving hand. Hold them gently in your heart. Release to God any anger or tension that may arise in you. Let these feelings go by setting them free to God’s care as you pray, “The LORD bless you and keep you; the LORD make his face to shine on you and be gracious to you; the LORD turn his face toward you and give you peace.”    (Take several deep breaths.)
  4. Finally, pray for all four people together—yourself, a friend, an acquaintance, and an enemy asking God’s blessing for everyone around you, to everyone in your neighborhood, to those in your town, and eventually to all people, everywhere knowing that we are all sustained by God’s love. The LORD bless you and keep you; the LORD make his face to shine on you and be gracious to you; the LORD turn his face toward you and give you peace.”     (Take several deep breaths.)

If you like this method of prayer try other blessing prayers from scripture that you might like: Deuteronomy 28:6,  Ezekiel 34:26,  Ephesians 1:3,  Matthew 13:16,  2 Cor 9:8,  Psalm 20:1-5, Numbers 6:24,  Romans 15:33,  2 Thessalonians 3:16,  Philippians 4:9


Ann Fitzgerald


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Empowered prayer May, 30, 2021


When Jesus saw the crowds, he had compassion for them, because they were harassed and helpless, like

sheep without a shepherd. Matthew 9:36


Jesus, gentle Savior, who makes us lie down in your green pastures. Thank you for feeding us with the

sweetness of your word and the coolness of peaceful water. Seek us when we wander and carry us back

into your fold.


Stir us from our complacency and empower us to fulfill your commandment to tell the good news to the

world. Give us compassion for people seeking peace who desperately cry for the lasting hope which is

found in you alone. amen


Ann Fitzgerald

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Ann Fitzgerald Jerusalem 2019 Talk about Palm Sunday



Ann Fitzgerald says "Jerusalem is behind me overlooking the gate that Jesus would have entered riding on the donkey."


Posted: Palm/Passion Sunday 4-5-20